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Safety for Parliamentary Committees

Parliament says on Wednesday it is setting up security measures to ensure safety of members of the National Assembly including staff involved in the Portfolio Committee on Public Enterprises inquiry into governance at Eskom.

This follows recent reports of threats made against Members of Parliament including Zukiswa Rantho, Natasha Mazzone and the Committee’s eovidence leader Advocate Ntuthuzelo Vanara.

Deputy Speaker of the National Assembly Lechesa Tsenoli said in a statement, Parliament wishes to reassure the public that it is setting in motion certain processes to, amongst others, address the concerns and safety of those conducting the inquiry and the inviolability of the inquiry itself.

“It is completely unacceptable to attack a Member or an official of Parliament for carrying out the legitimate work of a committee of the Legislature. We fully support the Members and officials of all parliamentary committees who are doing the work of Parliament, as defined by the Constitution.” said Tsenoli.

Reports of threats against members of Parliament follows an incident in which Minister of State Security Bongani Bongo, allegedly at the instruction of Eskom Interim Chairman Zethembe Khoza attempted to bribe Advocated Vanara with a “blank cheque” to resign as Parliamentary evidence leader.

Khoza has denied his involvement into the alleged bribery to force Advocate Bongo to collapse the investigation into the alleged capture of Eskom.

“I have absolutely no reason why I, or Eskom, would want to collapse the inquiry when we have been calling for such a legally-constituted platform so that we can place facts before the committee,” said Khoza.

Speaker of the National Assembly, Baleka Mbete has briefed President Jacob Zuma on the allegations of interference by Bongo, in the Parliamentary inquiry by the Public Enterprises Committee on the affairs of Eskom.

The Presidency has confirmed President Zuma is attending to the matter

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